It’s been awhile. A long, long while since I updated my blog. A lot has happened since the fall of last year but still, I should have been more on top of things on the blog. Especially because I love blogging. It’s how I stared this whole journey.
And I’ve missed it–blogging. I know that blogging is seen by some as old-school, now. But for me, it’s a way to write something different than the romance and suspense I’m usually writing, for my manuscripts. It’s just fun to write about books, reading, movies, and TV shows I’m binging. I like it, and I’m bringing it back to my website in 2019 because blogging brings me joy. And don’t we all need more in our lives that brings us a little bit of that?
Where did my words go, you might be wondering? I wish I had an answer to that. I had a lot of chaos happening around me, and to me, in 2018. It’s not an excuse, but I’m being honest. I just couldn’t handle the writing on top of the day job and other things that were happening. I had to make changes, and major ones at that. I changed jobs. I moved to a bigger place. (Both of these within 3 weeks of each other. Something I do not recommend!) I was taking on responsibilities for people who just would not step up to the plate and do what they needed to do. I was trying to fix everything even though that wasn’t my job either.
I barely wrote anything of substance during August, September and October of 2018. Things around me were moving too fast. I was trying to do “all the things” and then beating myself up when I didn’t finish “all the things”. Ridiculous, I know, but there is no one harder on myself when it comes to this, than me.
It had to stop and finally, it did.
I can’t pinpoint exactly when my tipping point was. I think it was somewhere in November. I’d had it. I hadn’t written anything good in forever. I was stuck in the middle of revisions and couldn’t find my way out even if I’d had a map. There was too much going on and I just couldn’t take it.
I’ve felt this way before. In law school, when I was trying to do everything and maintain my grades, and my sanity. I could see the inevitable was about to happen because just like in law school, I was barreling down a steep hill unchecked and there was nothing to stop me but a pile of boulders and sharp sticks, and probably some bee hives. It was not going to be a pretty end when I got there, that I knew.
I’m happy to report, I avoided most of the crash and just walked away with a few scrapes and bruises.
A couple of things helped me veer away from what I thought would be disaster. First, The Artist’s Way. This book, hell, just chapter 1, has always been able to pull me back from the brink of creative self-destruction. I started writing daily pages, and that took a huge weight off the mental ass-kicking I was giving myself every day.
Second, I stopped obsessing over my planner and all things associated with it. Holy hell. I was being destroyed bit by bit with all things planner related. (More on this, in the very near future.)
With some self-reflection and discipline, and a whole lot of self-care, I turned a corner in November. I began writing more. Not every day, but it was more regular than it had been in all of 2018. I even started tracking it on a fancy spreadsheet I created all by myself. (I’m super proud of this, by the way.) It has graphs and everything and I love it. So how many words did I start writing? Well, I wrote 11739 words in November. I wrote 19590 words in December. By comparison I didn’t write anywhere close to that from July to October, combined
So now the words are flowing, again. Progress is being made. I’m not treading water anymore on the whole question of what do I do next? I’ve got a plan, but it’s not one that I can’t handle. I’m not looking at progress from a thirty thousand foot view, any more. Shorter goal terms, more realistic goals, and being kinder to myself. Instead of saying “write 3k words” now it’s about asking myself “what can I do in my half hour lunch break?” and then doing it. Whether that’s going through emails or writing, it doesn’t matter. It;s about doing the task I pick. It’s also about not over-thinking it, over-planning it, and dissecting what I was gonna do until the half hour has passed and I have to get back to work.
Don’t get me wrong. Planning is great. I still do it. I just do it in a way that works for me and doesn’t wreck me, or my plans, when life throws those curve-balls. It’s been about three months since I had my light bulb moment and things started to turn for the better. I feel pretty confident in what I’ve been doing and that it works, for me.
Am I back to where I need to be? No. Am I getting there? Yes. And every day I’ll do one more thing, read or answer one more email I’ve been sitting on for far too long. Maybe send out those promos and teasers I made for Slow Ride. Or release the two books I have done, that are just sitting on my computer. Just one thing–that’s what I have to do. Then the next thing. And then the next.
And one of those things is this. Blogging. I’ve got some books I’ve read I want to blog about. And I have a few shows I’m binging right now that I absolutely love. I’ve been cooking more and eating healthier, so there might be some of that, too. And of course, there will be writing. Those two books that are done? How about an excerpt or two? You bet they’ll be here. Some flash fiction I’ve been having fun with? Sure! I’m going to blog about what brings me joy. And isn’t kind of writing–the kind that brings us happiness-what it’s all about, anyway?